When it comes to buying and selling websites, the platform you use makes all the difference. Different website marketplaces have their benefits and downsides, and when choosing which one you want to list your website with or purchase a website from, you’ll want to make sure it has all the features you require to suit your buying or selling needs. It’s important to consider any costs, vetting processes, requirements, transaction safety, support, and other factors associated with buying or selling in the marketplace. Both Exchange Marketplace and Empire Flippers are platforms that thousands of people use to buy and sell businesses every day. However, when it comes to your website’s niche, user-friendliness, technical support, and how quickly you are able to list, buy, or sell websites, one of the two platforms might work out better for you than the other.
In this review, we’ll tackle some of the basics of how Empire Flippers and Exchange Marketplace work, the process of actually buying or selling a website, the safety of the transaction, and ultimately whether or not it’s worth it to list or purchase your website with Empire Flippers.
Empire Flippers Review
Empire Flippers and Exchange Marketplace are both website buying and selling platforms where you can make money selling websites, doing website flipping or buying an e-commerce website you can use to sell products yourself. Both platforms follow a similar process: first, a website seller lists a domain for sale. The listing is sorted using the platform’s organization system so that potential buyers can search for it. Buyers browse the various websites for sale, and if they find a website they want to purchase, the transaction is carried out through the platform according to its process and guidelines.
Platforms like Exchange Marketplace and Empire Flippers help both buyers and sellers make money online, however, these types of web platforms are not one size fits all, and what works for one type of website buyer or seller might not work for another. There are not only personal preferences and criteria your website will have to meet, but also security measures to consider when buying and selling websites. Before you read any more of this review, think about the type of websites you are interested in listing or buying, and what you need from your marketplace platform in terms of security, user experience, and other aspects of business sales. Then read on for a breakdown of how the Empire Flippers platform works and the answers to some frequently asked questions about them.
How Does Empire Flippers Work?
Empire Flippers is a marketplace website that facilitates buying and selling online businesses. Sellers list their businesses, and buyers can browse and select one to purchase using the online platform. The concept is similar to Exchange Marketplace, although the processes, requirements, specifications, and fees are different. Below is an outline of how the Empire Flippers process works for sellers creating listings.
1. Select your monetization method
The first step in selling your business on empire flippers is to select the monetization method or multiple methods you employ in your online business. Your monetization method is how you make money selling your product or service on your website. Chances are your business falls into at least one of these categories, such as SaaS or display advertising, but if not, you can select “other.”
2. Enter your business details
The next step will be entering your business details. The only information you need to enter at this stage is your company website url, the start date of your business launch, and the date at which you first made money from your online business.
3. Enter your net profit
You will need to enter your average net profit over the past three, six, and 12 months. Your business’s net profit is the amount of money you keep for your company after all expenses are paid for.
4. Enter your website tracking information
If you use a software like Google Analytics in order to keep track of your website traffic, you will need to let Empire Flippers know. You will also need to include the date at which you started using website tracking software.
5. Pay the listing fee
First-time sellers have to pay $297 in order to list their business on Empire Flippers, and repeat sellers pay $97. Once you enter your credit card information and make the listing fee payment, your business will be on its way to being listed on Empire Flippers. Just because you paid the fee does not guarantee that your website will be listed, however, the fee is refundable if your business is not approved through Empire Flippers’s vetting process.
6. Wait for approval
After you have paid the fee and provided all of the necessary information about yourself and your business, you will wait for about one to three weeks for your listing to be approved. During this stage, Empire Flippers decides whether or not your business is eligible to be listed in their marketplace through a vetting process. In general, your business must be at least six months old, have had a steady revenue at least for the previous six months, generate a consistent flow of website traffic, and have no penalties or issues on record that could affect your website or business.
Empire Flippers Alternative
Exchange Marketplace is a great alternative to Empire Flippers if you use Shopify as a platform because it is more cost-effective. There is no listing fee involved, and no minimum requirements for net profit before you list your website. The user experience is more fluid for both buyers and sellers.
How Much Does Empire Flippers Cost?
There are a couple of different costs and fees associated with listing your e-commerce website using the Empire Flippers platform. As a first-time seller on Empire Flippers, you can expect to pay a $297 listing fee. Then, if you choose to list another website in the future, it will cost $97 per listing.
In addition to the flat-rate cost per listing, there are also commission fees involved with selling your website with Empire Flippers. Commissions are charged according to the pricing tier at which you sell your website. All website sellers who sell domains for $1 million or less on Empire Flippers are charged a 15% commission from the platform. A 12% commission is charged for sales between $1 million and $2 million, an 8% commission is charged for businesses selling between $2 million and $5 million, an 5% commission is charged for businesses selling between $5 million and $10 million, and a 2% commission is charged for any sales over $10 million. This type of pricing breakdown could cause sellers to list their websites for a higher price than what they are actually worth in order to get a lower commission rate.
Especially if you are planning to sell your business at a high price, commission fees can add up. You’ll have to be wary of this before you list your website on Empire Flippers so you aren’t surprised when your net sale does not earn you as much money as you initially hoped. While you can always change your mind on whether or not you still want to sell your website, you won’t be able to get your money back for the listing fee from Empire Flippers once the listing is up.
If you choose to use Exchange Marketplace to sell your website, however, the fee structure is a little bit different and more cost-effective for sellers. Regardless of whether you’re listing your first, fifth, or 500th website on the Exchange Marketplace, the commission fee will be calculated based on your selling price. And one of the best perks compared to Empire Flippers is that on Exchange there’s no fee involved in creating a listing.
Buying websites on Empire Flippers vs Exchange Marketplace
Buying a website on Empire Flippers first involves unlocking the website in the marketplace. The url and business niche are hidden, and buyers have a limited amount of chances to unlock listings, which could make it more difficult to compare businesses and decide which one to choose.
Because of the Empire Flippers net profit requirements, most of the businesses are listed at high prices, and buyers who don’t have much money to spend won’t have any luck finding one they can afford on the platform.
Especially if you would like to buy a Shopify business, you should consider Exchange Marketplace because only Shopify paid plan or development plan websites are sold on the platform. The business requirements are not as stringent as the Empire Flippers requirements — as long as your website is a Shopify website and meets Shopify’s Terms of Service, you’ll be able to list it on Exchange.
When comparing Empire Flippers vs Exchange, it’s important to note that Exchange Marketplace also accommodates a wider range of budgets, desires, and needs. There’s no need to have a proven revenue, and even websites that have not facilitated any sales so far can be listed in the Exchange Marketplace. This translates into more options for buyers and sellers. Website buyers have the option to purchase a website that is all set up and ready for them to make the first sale. This way, they can establish a customer base and sales in any way they want to. These types of websites are categorized on Exchange as starter stores. If you’re a buyer and you know that you want to spend $100 or less on your website purchase, Exchange Marketplace makes it easy for you to purchase the starter website of your dreams.
Buyers also have the option to purchase a website that has an established customer base and revenue stream, which means less work for them, but will probably mean the listing comes at a higher price.
Is Empire Flippers Safe?
When you list your website on the Empire Flippers marketplace, your personal information is encrypted, and you have the option of using two-factor authentication on your account. You also have the option of keeping the url to your business website private when you create your Empire Flippers listing. This practice helps sellers protect their information and business ideas, so no scammers can copy their website and recreate it for themselves.
On the other hand, this process can discourage buyers from purchasing websites on Empire Flippers because they must provide credit card information or proof of funds in order to have access to the url. This process is called unlocking a listing and can limit the number of options buyers are able to look at at once.
Both Empire Flippers and Exchange Marketplace have vetting processes that protect buyers from website scams, but as a buyer, being able to look at the actual website is important. In the Exchange Marketplace, buyers can look at websites similar to the ones they are considering purchasing, and make a safer and more informed decision. Plus, they can view as many websites as they like without having to verify proof of funds.
Another important safety concern you should consider when choosing a website buying and selling platform is the transaction process. As a buyer or seller, you should know ahead of time how your money will be transferred, and the security measures the sales platform facilitates.
Using Empire Flippers, once a buyer officially purchases your business, their funds are then transferred to you, minus the commission charge, and sellers have the option of either transferring their business to the buyer themselves, or taking advantage of Empire Flippers’s transfer system, which can take between three and five weeks.
With Exchange Marketplace, payment transfers are taken care of securely using Shopify. The transfer process is supported through the Exchange Marketplace app, which provides hands-on assistance each step of the way.
So, is Empire Flippers worth it? Only if you have tens of thousands of dollars to spend on a business. Different marketplaces facilitate different types of website sales. If you don’t mind paying a listing fee and you’re okay with having your website listed exclusively in one marketplace for six months, you could give Empire Flippers a try. If you use Shopify to run your business and want more flexibility with the type of website you’re allowed to list and the information shared with buyers, try Exchange Marketplace instead.